In the vineyard, Petit Verdot is an inconsistent grape that often has trouble ripening. Wines made from Petit Verdot have floral aromas and earthy, almost smoky flavors. The grape also has flavors of spicy green peppers. It ripens late in the growing season and can therefore be problematic to harvest. Small amounts of Petit Verdot will add complexity to full-bodied red blends.
Many California wineries add a bit of Petit Verdot to Cabernet-based blends. The grape is well-suited to warmer wine regions in California and needs a long growing season. The Napa Valley has recently seen increased plantings. While most producers add it in small quantities to blends, some are making single varietal wines of Petit Verdot.
Petit Verdot plantings are concentrated in the Medoc. It used to be more widely planted but many growers have uprooted the temperamental grape. Chateau Margaux is the home of Petit Verdot. It continues to be added to their Grand Vin. The grape is also grown in Spain and Tuscany.
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